John Allen to address Leaders of Catholic Social Services

John Allen, Image from Crux

John Allen, Image from Crux

From 24 – 26 February 2016, Catholic Social Services Victoria and Catholic Social Services Australia will jointly host a mission conference focused on the theme ‘Review, Reimagine, Renew: Mission making a difference in a changing world’.

Veteran journalist and Vatican Correspondent, John L. Allen Jr, will be the keynote speaker at the Conference. The Tablet, has called Allen ‘the most authoritative writer on Vatican affairs in the English language’.

Allen, associate editor of The Boston Globe, also writes for The New York Times, CNN and NPR. He is author of nine books including, ‘Against the Tide: The Radical Leadership of Pope Francis’ and ‘The Future Church: How Ten Trends Are Revolutionizing the Catholic Church’.

Other speakers at the Conference include: Julie Edwards, Jesuit Social Services, CEO, speaking about ‘Leading people to build a better world’; Cathie McGowan, MP, will talk about ‘A more just and compassionate Australia’; and, Tony Nicholson, Brotherhood of St Laurence, CEO, will deliver a workshop about the ‘New models for social investment’. Other topics include the challenge of preventing domestic violence and sexual abuse within the community.

Denis Fitzgerald, Director of Catholic Social Services Victoria, said the Conference “is a great opportunity for the grass roots of the Church to gather to discuss the challenges we all face in our communities. Challenges that impact so heavily on the most vulnerable in our society”.

The aim of the conference is to equip leaders, practitioners and supporters within the social services sector to set new directions when making decisions and to build their networks for mission-impact.

Hosted at the Catholic Leadership Centre in Melbourne, the conference will provide opportunities for reflection and spiritual development. The conference will look at Catholic Social Teaching in action, and how to secure new forms of social investment for mission-impact.

CSSV Conf2016 banner

The Conference will provide exciting input and valuable opportunities for dialogue and reflection to enable those working for the Church to build mission-impact.

Why this conference? Catholic social services are not, in the words of Pope Francis, ‘immortal, immune or indispensable’. There is rapid change in the environment in which Catholic social services operate: changes in the Church, organisational profile, Australian society, and the relations between Government, not-for-profits and now for-profit providers. Social service providers everywhere, faith-based or not, are under increasing scrutiny and pressure. How best to actively respond to the Gospel call to build a more compassionate and just society? Inspiring speakers will engage these themes throughout the Conference.

Information and bookings:

Enquiries: including low-income / student and other concession pricing, please contact Lucia Brick on (03) 9287 5566 or email:

Source :
Catholic Social Services Victoria